Technology changes fast. Some people naturally embrace change and welcome it, even look forward to it but others don’t like anything new and hold fast to the way things have always been done.
We install new technology for customers every day. I believe people are afraid of what they don’t know or understand. If we can help them transition by clearly explaining the new technology and help them adjust and learn how to use it in their role with their company, everyone wins. Our customers end up loving the new technology and are more apt to tell their friends, family and business associates which results in a win for us; the company’s processes are enhanced or in some cases streamlined creating a win for the customer and the employees are more comfortable and happier with the new changes in their tools and technology. It’s a win for everyone. That’s my opinion but I wanted to go a step further. I thought I’d ask our Project Managers what they do when they encounter people hesitant to embrace the new technology tools we are installing and they are training. I got some very interesting feedback.
Melissa Johnston has been a Project Manager for over 12 years. She said “Anyone that shows reservations during training becomes a focus for me. I engage them more in the conversation, I learn more about what they do and then try to relate features back to them. In addition, I make mental notes to spend more direct one on one time with them once we’re up and running. I help them customize the tools to their specific needs. I let them cry it out (seriously; happens all the time) and then I celebrate heavily with them once they get it, use it, and embrace it. It’s one of my favorite parts of my job and I always see it as a challenge. People express their anxiety and fears in different ways, but the bottom line is that it’s a real feeling to them even if we don’t understand. If we can help them in their job by not being afraid and anxious, we have won personally and also professionally. They will always remember that experience and they will definitely share it with others.”
And Erica Dietrich, one of our new PM’s added “Yesterday I spoke with a young lady that answers the phones for one of my customers and asked her how she currently puts callers on hold and transfers them. She didn’t explain the whole process to me but just said it was complicated (and I could hear it in her voice). I briefly explained how the ShoreTel system worked and the excitement in her voice spoke volumes on how easy the system is. She is really looking forward to her new system!”
And just today we recieved an email from a new customer (partner) proving that the project managers can really make a difference in accepting new technology. Paul Engel from Vebridge sent this note after their installation completed this week.
“Thank you for sending Ashley Easton to conduct our training, today. She did an extraordinary job. She put things in context prior to showing them. She was ultra-responsive to questions. She was knowledgeable and articulate. She appeared to genuinely care about our success with the system. What a wonderful use of our time! Thank you, again.” Paul Engel, President/Chief Executive Officer, VeBridge
For more information on how to help your employees embrace new technology, check out this article from our partners at ShoreTel.